Benjamin Franklin Papers

To Benjamin Franklin from John Beveridge, 20 January 1766

From John Beveridge6

ALS: American Philosophical Society

Philadelphia Jany 20th 1766


Herewith you will receive three Copies of some familiar Epistles &c, which I have printed. Two bound to be delivered to Dr. Pringle,7 and one on Common paper as they were Sold here for your self. I have given one bound in the same manner to Mrs. Franklin, which waits your return at your own house, but this common one is in order to shew to any of your friends, or the Book-sellers, if you please to try, for me, if they will undertake to sell some Number of the Copies but I hope you will take Care they do not serve me as Mrs. Franklin tells me they served you &c8or if you and the Dr. think fit, you may shew it to the reviewers. But I would not leave it long in their hands, lest by some means or other it should come abroad in London, as I have a view of reprinting it either there or rather at Glasgow &c.9

I have been advised by some to send several Copies more, to your Care, viz for Lord Halifax,1 his Grace &c. of Canterbury2 &c. but as they were not of my Acquaintance I thought it Presumption, and absolutely refused, unless you think it would answer some better purpose than I can forsee. I wish you all Happiness a Speedy and Safe Return, which is all at present from Sir Your very humble and most obedient Servant

Jno: Beveridge

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

6For John Beveridge, professor of Latin at the College of Philadelphia and author of a recent book of letters and other occasional pieces, see above, p. 33 n. At Beveridge’s request, DF had put BF down as a subscriber for two copies of his volume.

7Beveridge, who had taught for many years in Scotland before emigrating to America, seems to have known the Pringle family there. In a note to his Familiar Epistles he acknowledged his “many obligations” to Dr. Pringle’s elder brother, Sir Robert Pringle, although it is not clear precisely what those obligations were.

8Perhaps DF had told Beveridge about BF’s experience with James Logan’s Cato Major, of which he had sent 300 copies to London in 1744 to be sold but for which he had, as late as 1781, received no account. Above, II, 404 n, 412; BF to William Strahan, Dec. 4, 1781, N.Y. Publ. Lib. (Berg).

9Beveridge’s book was apparently neither reviewed nor reprinted in Great Britain.

1Beveridge’s Epistle xxx was dedicated to Halifax.

2The Rev. William Smith, with whom Beveridge had consulted about his book (see above, p. 34), may have advised him to send a copy to the Archbishop of Canterbury.

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